Daniel Literature & Genré

Book of Daniel • Jewish Literary Techniques • Apocalyptic Literature • 12/01/06

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Books About Daniel – Literature And Genré

Literary Analysis

The Literary Structure of the Old Testament: A Commentary on Genesis-Malachi

by David Dorsey

Literary Structure

I love this book! If you are studying the Old Testament and buy one book this year, this is it. There are literary structures in the books of the Old Testament that override the linear, chronological preference of the western mind. Do you wonder why Daniel jumps around chronologically? Or the book of Ezra? This book demonstrates thematic and chiastic structures that override chronological rigidity. I found it fascinating to learn that some books which seemed disorganized to me were actually highly organized, but in non–linear patterns.

Dorsey provides outlines and literary structures for most books of the Old Testament; the ‘commentary’ is strictly regarding structure and organization, nothing to do with verse exposition. Dorsey is Professor of Old Testament at the Evangelical School of Theology at Myerstown, Pennsylvania.

Reasonably priced and highly recommended.

Baker/Revell. 352 pages. 1999.

Prophecy and the Apocalyptic Dream: Protest and Promise

<Out of Print>

by D. S. Russell

Apocalyptic Literature

Written at a popular level by an expert in the field, this book introduces the characteristics of apocalyptic literature and the cultural setting which spawned it. I found it well–written and helpful. Russell’s passion for this genre is evident on every page. Russell take the late date position on Daniel and vehemently defends it--a bit excessively at times, although we applaud his rebuff of the Hal Lindsey “Late Great Planet Earth” crowd (ala Tim LaHaye--Left Behind series...) which still dominates the trash fiction found in stacks at Evangelical Christian bookstores.

Henderickson Publishers. 128 pages. 1994.

“This is an excellent popular introduction to apocalyptic literature (Daniel, Revelation) by one of the recognized experts in the field. It is readable and sane. This volume should give a new, but biblically sound, understanding of Daniel and Revelation and should help readers to fit these books into the larger biblical perspective.”

— Gordon Fee

Table of Contents


1. Prophecy and the Apocalyptic Dream

2. The Natural and the Supernatural

3. Prediction and Prognostication

4. Principles and Paradigms

A Select Bibliography

Index of Subjects, Authors, Texts

Read a quote from this book 

Books by D. S. Russell

The Apocalyptic Imagination, An Introduction to Jewish Apocalyptic Literature

by John J. Collins

Apocalyptic Literature

Not examined yet. Eerdmans. 1998.

Review by Jackson Snyder *


 A Commentary on the Revelation of John

By George Ladd

Apocalyptic Literature

Relevant to the Book of Daniel in its handling and explanation of the genre of apocalyptic literature, this commentary is superb. My Pastor led our Ironmen group through a study of the book of Revelation, during which time I read this book.  Combined, they rescued the Book of Revelation for me –from a confused nightmare/dream into an amazing, purposeful, highly–structured message.

If you’re only familiar with cheesy best–selling novels and a bit frustrated at really understanding the  Book of Revelation, you need this book!

Eerdmans. 308 pages. 1972.

More books by George Ladd


Breaking the Code: Understanding the Book of Revelation

by Bruce Metzger

Apocalyptic Literature

Another great book to understand the genré of apocalyptic. While focused on the book of Revelation, this book is instructive for Daniel as well. I found it to be written at a more popular level than the Ladd book. >Bargain price as well.<

Abingdon Press. 112 pages. 1994.

Other Books by Bruce Metzger

Apocalyptic Literature

By Mitchell Reddish

Written by a teacher for his students, this book is a great introduction which supplies actual examples of the different kinds of apocalyptic literature as it walks you through each style. Reddish begins with a selection of Jewish apocalyptic literature and then introduces Christian apocalyptic.

Selected readings include portions of the War Scroll from Qumran (1QM); 1 Enoch; the Sibylline Oracles; the Shepherd of Hermas; the apocalypses of Peter, Paul, and James; the Ascension of Isaiah, and others. Very worthwhile.

Features a foreword and recommendation by John J. Collins.

Henderickson Press. 342 pages soft cover.


Apocalyptic Literature Old Testament Studies

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